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Member 1 post
Posted one year ago
My stepdaughter is now 29 she moved out into her own home 6 months ago. She has struggled with her eating disorder since her mid teens. She has recently qualified as a MH nurse and has a full time job, bought her own home and is now living independently. Sounds great everything coming together right ...no. Her mental health appears to have deteriorated and her eating disorder has raised its ugly head!! We have talked which is something she hates to do and she assures me that she is receiving regular therapy and working on things however every time I see her she is becoming thinner and thinner. I am terrified that she will become really unwell and I have no way of monitoring her progress as she works hard don't get to see her as often as I would like! I don't know what to do or who to speak to I feel like a mother that is unable to mother and even though I tell myself she is an adult I feel so out of control and unable to prevent something awful happening to her. I'm scared.
Admin 179 posts
I am having a look over the posts and I thought that I would just ask how things are going with you and your daughter a few months on?
My heart goes out to you, I am sorry for a slow post I have been away. I think that the worst thing about supporting someone you care for who has an eating disorder is the feeling of impotence, I know that there are many times when I have stopped myself from saying what I should say because I feel terrorised about what the outcome may be. But although it is difficult I do believe that you need to find a way of letting her know that you are there for her, letting her know that you think she is getting poorly again and most crucially getting a chance to be with her. My daughter spoke to me most when we were doing something together, walking the dogs, or on a car journey, somewhere that gives us something that I would call idle time. Perhaps you could organise a trip out with her , she will may try to put you off , it may be an idea not to include a meal in the trip out, but maybe a coffee and give her the chance to talk.
Every eating disorder is different just as every person is different however there are some commonalities and the one that you and I both probably know is that the eating disorder is a coping strategy. Your daughter is very fearful about something and may be limiting her food intake as that will numb the feelings. It is good that she is having therapy, but do you know anything about the therapist are they understanding of eating disorders - this is worth checking as I know that some therapist can just increase anxiety and really do not understand eating disorders. If she is getting thinner then she must go back to the doctor to have her bloods monitored.
I also wonder does she have any friends that she may be confiding in, I know that this sometimes feels a bit sneaky, but for my daughter when I was desperate I would speak to her friends and swear them to secrecy. Also talk to your friends and wider family, those who you think will help, build a support network, if is possible.
Don't forget the ABC helpline is there for you as well.
Wishing you and your daughter better days